Getting Your Purchase Order Past the Comptroller Page 2

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The “No Sooner Than” Approach

If you read my X52 PRO review, you know I used this variation on the Declaration of Intent technique for my spanking new HOTAS. Usually used after purchasing several computer toys over a short time span, the Comptroller will attempt to halt upgrades by remarking that one is on a “rant of consumerism” and should “take a little while before buying anything else.”

The trap is that if one doesn’t establish exactly when “a while” is on the calendar, one is never going to be able to buy another gadget again. Ever. The escape clause is in setting the demarcation firmly and at a point in time that seems distant but is reasonably soon.

In the case of my X52 PRO, I promised not to purchase a new computer item for the remainder of the year. It sounded both magnanimous and reasonable. That the Comptroller hadn’t realized that it was the 28th of December is no never mind to me; on the 1st of January I ordered the HOTAS without guilt or question. She did say, “oh, you are such a…”

The “Enthusiastic Discussion” Approach

Oddly enough, I discovered this technique quite by accident. It turns out that my wife has absolutely no interest in the technology behind modern gaming peripherals being discussed at length. Though she’s a “techie” in her job, hearing the merits of “Hall Sensors” and “46 degrees of tracking keeping three points of infrared reflection (or emitters) to refine the location of one’s head in 3D space” doesn’t enthrall her.

“You’re lecturing me.”

“No, honey, I’m just telling you about this. Not only do they track motion relative to each sensor, they do so without friction, extending the life and accuracy in a way that Old School potentiometers simply can’t replicate.”

“Yes, dear, but you’re reading from stuff you printed from a technical web site.”

“And showing you pictures and charts!”

“So how much?”

“For what?”

“Whatever the touch free, frictionless sensors come in.”

“Oh, $179.95 plus shipping from GoGamer, but I think I’ll wait a while before I think about buying it. I still could do some more research to see if it’s really that big a leap forward or just techno-mumble hype.”

“If I say to buy it will you shut up and promise not to talk to me about this ever again?”

“Fine, Mrs. ‘you never talk to me,’ if that’s how you want it; fine.”

The “On Sale” Approach

It’s a beautiful thing when it happens. The toy for the computer you’ve been watching has a drop in price or a special attached to it. Women, by and large, are really good at trimming the costs of things by catching them on sale. Note, I don’t say “will buy anything if it’s on sale,” because it’s not true. They do the same thing we do — keep their eyes open for bargains on stuff they want (but are unwilling to pay “full price” for).

Sigh. That TrackIR 4 PRO with clip just went on sale.”

“Really? How much?”

“Ten percent off. I’ve been waiting for it to drop in price.”

“Do you think it’ll go back up in price?”

“Probably.” (Duh, I’m not willing to wait and see if it does.)

“Well, if you really want it, go ahead before the price goes up.”

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